Posted by: youngragingbull | May 14, 2013

U.S. airlines collected $6.1B in add-on fees in 2012

U.S. airlines raked in a record $6.1 billion in baggage and reservation change fees from passengers in 2012 – helping the industry return to profitability – according to a report by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics on Tuesday.

Airlines started charging for a first checked suitcase in 2008 and the fees have climbed since. Airlines typically charge $25 each way for the first checked bag, $35 for the second bag and then various extra amounts for overweight or oversized bags.

The nation’s 15 largest carriers collected a combined $3.5 billion in bag fees in 2012, up 3.8% from 2011, according to the report. Fees for changing a reservation totalled $2.6 billion, up 7.3%.

Collectively, airlines received $159.5 billion in revenue last year and had expenses of $153.6 billion. The 3.7% profit margin comes almost entirely from add-on fees.

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